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Marvel hopes to summon streaming magic with ‘WandaVision’

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“He says, ‘No, if it goes well, we’ll be together for the next 10 years,'” Feige recalls. “It was about 13 years ago, so he was right.”

Years later, The Mandalorian creators Favreau and Feige aren’t just behind the giant movies, they’re also key to Disney + ‘s strategy of bringing big budget projects from the world to Star wars and Marvel on the small screen.

Favreau’s friend and former boss Feige follows in his footsteps on Friday as he debuts WandaVision, Marvel’s first scripted series for Disney +.WandaVision comes 14 months after the launch of Disney + with The Mandalorian, the shot Star wars series that helped propel the streaming service to 86.8 million paying subscribers. While Disney + has released a number of titles since its launch in November 2019,WandaVision is just the second high-profile series to debut on the service, with COVID-19 delaying Marvel’s planned release last summer Falcon and the Winter Soldier and pushing WandaVision in 2021.

WandaVision to focus on Avengers heroes Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen) and Vision (Paul Bettany), living in suburban bliss inspired by the 1950s sitcom until they begin to question their perfect life together. It’s Marvel’s most offbeat project to date and by far the smallest, following the sprawling 23-movie saga that has seen Avengers: Endgame (2019) topped the highest grossing film of all time.

Feige believes that by going to the small screen, he can still have a cultural impact similar to what Marvel is used to.

Mandalorian has proven that this team and this platform can touch the cultural zeitgeist in a way our films have, too, ”Feige says.

Feige is the highest grossing film producer of all time with a global gross of $ 22.55 billion. Although he does not get receipts at the counter with WandaVision, he says he feels excitement and nervousness like an opening weekend. He also seeks to answer the same questions.

“Does the audience appreciate it? Did it meet or exceed expectations? Did it overturn expectations? And do they still think about it and talk about it for weeks, months or years after seeing it for the first time? ” Feige said. “The specific barometers of success are very different in streaming than they are at the box office, of course, and I’ll leave that to the experts at Disney + to find out what their formulas are.”

While Feige may be familiar with these formulas, watchers can expect to learn very little about the show’s performance for Disney +, which has followed Netflix’s reading book and has chosen not to share widely. statistics around the performance of its streaming movies and TV shows. However, a third-party measurement shows how much is at stake WandaVision release for Disney +, which so far has relied heavily on its catalog of new and classic films to attract subscribers. According to Antenna data, the filmed version of the Broadway musical Hamilton and Pixar’s Christmas release Soul were the two main drivers of registrations. The only series to make Antenna’s list was The Mandalorian, which arrived at No. 3. And according to Nielsen, The Mandalorian was the only Disney + series among the 10 most-viewed original shows in 2020 (Disney + led Nielsen’s most-viewed movies list with seven of 10 titles.)

Marvel has had a number of TV shows in the Marvel Cinematic Universe before, although they never really felt like they connected directly to the movies.WandaVision is the first Marvel show to be overseen by Feige, which is a signal to audiences that the Disney + series will truly count in the larger history of the MCU.

“Comic book creators can take things wherever they want, which is why there are 48 different Batmans,” says Michael Niederman, television professor at Columbia College in Chicago. “But when people want to invest in a TV series and a film series, they crave more continuity. They crave a more holistic approach.”

Feige has 10 Disney + shows planned over the next few years, with the series also featuring Jeremy Renner Hawk Eye and Tom Hiddleston’s Loki weaving in and out of films. WandaVision, for example, will be directly linked to Sam Raimi’s filmDoctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, scheduled for March 25, 2022.

From 2015 to 19, Marvel has several Netflix shows set in the MCU, including Daredevil, Jessica jones, Luke Cage, Iron fistand The punisher. Netflix ended these series as Disney prepared to launch its own streaming competitor, as the goal was to introduce new characters, such as She-Hulk and Ms. Marvel, as well as bring in actors from MCU cinema, characters from the Netflix shows are still playing.

“It’s all on set,” Feige says. “That’s one of the fun things about the comics is that the characters come and go and come and go. This is all an inspiration for the future. There are great characters and actors in these. series. “

While 2020 was the first year in more than a decade without a Marvel Studios release, 2021 potentially looks to be the busiest of all time.Falcon and the Winter Soldier arrives at Disney + on March 19, featuring Loki next in May, the animation What if…?, featuring MCU voice talent, launched this summer. Both Ms. Marveland Hawk Eye are scheduled for Disney + arcs at the end of 2021. On the big screen, the studio’s schedule includesBlack Widow (May 7)Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings (July 9th),Eternals (November 11) and the Sony co-production Spider-Man 3 (December 17), although those plans may change due to continued COVID-19 theater closures.

These are big plans, and Feige is convinced to start with something a little more intimate.WandaVision.

According to Feige: “It was purposefully created and produced for the television media, as a celebration and tribute to the television media.”

Natalie Jarvey contributed to this story.



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